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Cablegate: Media Reaction On the Visit of Secretary of Defense

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS TEGUCIGALPA 002014

SIPDIS

FOR WHA/PD (OHILTON), WHA/CEN (TKELLY), PM, AND INL

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP PREL KPAO MOPS PGOV SNAR HO IZ
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION ON THE VISIT OF SECRETARY OF DEFENSE
DONALD H. RUMSFELD TO HONDURAS, AUGUST 20, 2003


1. Editorial in Tegucigalpa-based liberal daily "La Tribuna" on
8/23 entitled "Thanks". "President Maduro made an opportune
clarification stating that it was absolutely false that Honduras
is getting prepared to install another U.S. military base in our
territory, which will be supposedly used to fight against
narcotrafficking. According to Maduro, the U.S. Secretary of
Defense Donald Rumsfeld came for a very simple reason: to thank
the Honduran people for our support by sending troops for the
pacification and reconstruction of Iraq, and there was nothing
else."

"Since we are very skeptical, there is a lot of people who
believe that such an important visitor doesn't bother to come to
a country like Honduras just to give thanks, that there must be a
hidden agenda for his visit. There have been several theories
about the presence of Rumsfeld here in Honduras, especially when
we were the only Central American country he visited. Even
though the governmental authorities have repeatedly explained the
purpose of his visit, there are still many people wondering, why
did Rumsfeld come to Honduras?."

2. Editorial in San Pedro Sula-based liberal daily "Tiempo" on
8/23 entitled "Thank you, very much". "We don't really know the
real purpose of the visit of the U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald
Rumsfeld to Honduras after he went to Colombia. Then, we should
try to be satisfied with the official explanation that Rumsfeld
came to thank the Maduro government for sending Honduran troops
to help the British-American occupation armies in Iraq."

"This expression of gratitude is truly extraordinary because we
had already been visited by the Deputy Secretary of Defense and
the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Richard Myers,
who also came to Honduras to thank us. So, as we say, this much
gratitude is getting confusing."

"However, we can't avoid using our imagination. Some people -
ourselves included - have seen a relationship between the visit
of Secretary Rumsfeld to Colombia and Honduras with the internal
conflict in this South American country and its links with drug
trafficking, and President Bush's war against terrorism."

Palmer

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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